August 3rd, 2012

marcus 2013

Intempo Evolve

This arrived today, and once I'd figured out my own idiot mistake in configuring its IP address works pretty well.

It has built-in WiFi but doesn't seem to have an option to change the DNS address if you use it, which means it won't work on my wireless network. Ethernet is fully configurable or full auto, with no in-between; you can't just tell it to use auto address, gateway, etc. but set the DNS manually. Hence the idiot mistake, I got the gateway address wrong...

Graphics quality with HDMI cable is as good as the source; excellent with a downloaded high-def video file, pretty good with BBC iPlayer, a bit on the jagged side with Youtube.

File compatibility is good - I've tried four or five different video and audio formats and all are OK, no problems whatever.

Main dislike - The menus are a little on the fiddly side, and the icons and on-screen text pretty small, and it doesn't seem to be possible to tweak that. I think they'd work reasonably well on a hand-held tablet, not so good on a 21" screen the other side of the room. I'm going to be pointing this out to the manufacturer. It's possible that there's a way to tweak this I haven't found, the instructions are fairly minimal.

One oddity is that it doesn't appear to be designed with a true stand-by mode; sleep mode just switches off the keyboard and touch pad on the remote, if you actually switch off the box it takes a couple of minutes to restart. I'd imagine that power-consumption is pretty low anyway, but in these energy-conscious days it feels a little odd.

The bottom line is that you're getting a fully-fledged Android PC (using the TV as display), micro alpha-numeric keyboard and touchpad, cables, etc. for about £67 including VAT and delivery. It's a pretty good deal, and since you can add Android apps I may think of uses for it other than as a media box. I'm pretty happy, and can honestly recommend it if you need this sort of media solution.